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Marcelo M. Wanderley
Ircam – Centre Pompidou firstname.lastname@example.org
In this article, we comment on various definitions of the term gesture in the general literature of humanhuman and human-computer interaction and in the musica domain. Different propositions of gesture classifications are then discussed and topics from other disciplines, that are important to the discussion on gesture and music, are presented. Concepts developed by the first author related to instrumental gestures, such as energy continuum, gestural channel, and instrumental gesture typology are reviewed in this context. The introduction of case studies on acoustic instruments helps in supporting the theory. Finally, the role of non-obvious (ancillary or accompanist) gestures is discussed with respect to clarinet playing.
What does one mean by "gesture"? In this article we carry out a survey of the general literature on human- human and human-computer interaction in order to devise basic characteristics defining a framework in which different interaction contexts occur. We do so in the next section. It will become clear from the beginning that there will hardly be one common definition of gesture. Although we do not intend to provide a unique definition of gesture at the end of this survey, we believe that it is useful to compare the various definitions and point out the specificity of this topic in the musical domain, with respect to related communication fields.
The analysis of the definitions presented in appendices A and B shows different, even disparate, notions attached to the term gesture. Nevertheless, there is necessarily a common denominator that we will try to bring out by critically commenting on the definitions.1
Let us chose the definitions we will comment on by initially discarding dictionary definitions, provided for the sake of information. Let us also discard too focused ones, that only take into account the ordinary notion of "hand movement", or the opposed ones, such as B.2.a, that sees gesture only through the angle of physical technique. The same is valid for other definitions – pertinent but specific – used in specialized domains such as co-verbal gestures (A.2.b, A.2.a) and sign language (A.4.a). We will attach ourselves to the ones that, being more detailed, present some confusion or potentially prejudicial restrictions.
1. Let us not forget that these definitions have been taken out of their original contexts, and therefore do not fully represent their original meaning. Moreover, many of the quoted texts surely did not intent to propose a general and universal definition of the term "gesture", but only focus on a specific meaning in the context of the correspondent article.
Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music, M.M. Wanderley and M. Battier, eds. © 2000, Ircam - Centre Pompidou 71
Free-movements or manipulation?
Definition A.3.a (and A.3.c) is elaborated and more modern than others in that it replaces the notions of feeling, idea, emotion, intention, sentiment, attitude, passion, opinion by the neutral and more contemporary concept of information. However, the idea of gesture is here reduced to what is perceptible to vision and during the time of its execution. Should one then consider as not gestural the movements of a violin player or of a graphic designer? Writing In the same article, writing is not considered as a gesture under the assumption that only the resulting words convey information. This is only the case of typewriting (and one could add: in non real-time!). Handwriting comprehends the realization of a drawing that itself contains an expression, an interesting information, indeed essential in the case of graphological studies. Furthermore, the production of identifiable characters or of words is not absolutely separable from the graphical function in the case of handwriting or from the articulation/sequence of event characteristics in typewriting. The words produced do not contain traces of these characteristics, but these are essential to their realization. Also important in typewriting, as P. Viviani states, is to consider the personal timing style of the writer since it marks the sequence of intervals with easily recognized "prosodic" traces. Or, as researchers showed more than a century ago, telegraph operators could recognize the sender of a Morse code message only by means of temporal variations (modulations) in the Morse signal that are idiosyncratic to each operator [Viviani98]. This fact was later known as temporal homothety (Fr. homothétie), i.e., the motor system tends to impose a stereotyped temporal modulation to all discrete sequences of units of action. The case of writing shows in fact that the nature of information – for both the gestural and other expression channels – is neither unique nor absolute. It depends on the object and on the observer's point of view. It also shows that the gestural behavior makes up a (complex) whole, a system made of multiple functions that articulate and combine among themselves. To excessively separate or divide it may mean loosing its substance.
Posture and Gesture
Definition A.2.a excludes whatever relates to practical actions, postural adjustments, orientation changes, self-manipulations. This allows us, by the negation, to characterize the term gesture. One needs however to remain prudent in the sense that, similarly to what was discussed before, one cannot strictly consider the significant part of a gesture, whatever it may be, independently from the postures that allow its correct execution. The division of posture and gesture in definition A.4.b as respectively a static form and a dynamic form – the last as a sequence of static ones (similar to viewing a film frame by frame) can be criticized in the same manner. This separation may occult what, in the gestural behavior, is intrinsically a matter of the dynamics of movement.
The Role of Meaning
The majority of the gesture definitions cited above refer to the notions of expression of feeling (A.1.a, A.1.b), idea, emotion, intention (A.1.c), expression of — or emphasis on — an idea, sentiment, or attitude, sentiment () or passion, emphasis on an argument, assertion, or opinion (A.1.d) or information (A.3.a) and finally the notion of meaning (A.3.b, A.1.c). In this way, according to all these definitions, should one exclude from the domain of gestures those actions related to the execution of long acquired skills – by a cabinetmaker, a mason or a surgeon – that do not have an expressive function, but a material objective, and require a technique, know-how, experience, talent and intelligence? The notion of meaning – information that contributes to a specific goal to oneself or to a partner in communication (A.3.b) – is more general than feeling, emotion and so on. It is enriched with the idea that the partner may be a human being or a machine (thus an object). But this notion remains problematic in the sense that, not only because one can envisage to capture, sample, rationalize in finite digital data, the physical phenomena produced during the interaction between an individual and a material object on which one works (e.g. the molding of a cabinetmaker), it is possible to reduce skillful gestural actions to a transmission of information. In fact, the notion of partner is restrictive: in the case of the cabinetmaker, who is his partner? The piece of furniture! One could name the users of the furniture, who may admire its beauty; but in the case of the surgeon who performs a "surgical gesture"? When one elaborates an object such as a piece of furniture, one does not communicate – one
Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music, M.M. Wanderley and M. Battier, eds. © 2000, Ircam Centre Pompidou 72
Ircam . depending on the point of view.M. two remarks can be made: a) In the category of the features cited in B. Regarding the bi-directionality of the definition.a. applied or not to a physical object. sand. This is seen from definition B. since they do not necessarily present an objective of information? They do also produce something. significant or meaningless. As commented above. © 2000. transforms. completely controlled or not.). Battier.b and B. intentional or automatic/reflex. but an ensemble or system of functions.4. in material conditions that may be quite similar and require from the individual the same categories of faculties and competencies. a complexity.3. let us analyze definition number B. The term "wave form" used there denotes a confusion between the object and the analysis (the different analysis levels or simply observation levels) of the object. there are phenomena that are not necessarily produced by gestures (in the first direction) – for instance. the definitions from other fields seem hardly to adapt to the gesture in music.1.3. Finaly.a.1. falls. the produced objects may a posteriori eventually become communicational objects. – so why associate "gesture" to these phenomena. expressive or inexpressive. but this need not necessarily always be Fourier analysis. believed or had or not conscience of emitting.a the notions of gesture and posture are mutually exclusive. Fourier.a states: The notion of a musical gesture that at the time it occurs involves no actual human movement but merely refers to it is quite common.2." We consider that the word gesture (or the French equivalent geste) necessarily makes reference to a human being and to its body behavior – whether they be useful or not. eds. etc. what is the interest in employing the term gesture in the second case (from signal to musical intentions) if not only to indicate that the features being considered could be – without meaning that they eventually are – produced by a gesture in the first direction? From the above exposed. if not with an anthropomorphic intention? b) Confusion is induced between significative and signified.1. Moreover. The "wave form" (it would be more interesting to say the "signal") can be observed or analyzed with spectral analysis tools.4.Centre Pompidou 73 . pressure. Gesture in music From the above analysis. all natural movements such as flux (wind. definitions B. And furthermore. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. but it may also be observed or analyzed by means of other formalisms permitting the identification of structures at a more elaborated level. energy. this separation of gesture and posture as two independent or even opposed notions is restrictive and does not correspond to the real situation where both co-exist (see below). crumbling. effective or ineffective. although it may be useful in a purely dichotomous reasoning. this information may be decoded by the addressees independently from what the original individual might have wanted.a tend to consider gestures as equivalent to physical (playing) techniques or performer actions. etc.arranges.a. conscious or not..a. Moving to the musical domain. a specificity much bigger than to wave goodbye with one's hand. the analysis tools in such a more elaborated level may use analysis results from a less elaborated one. they overcome the notion of gesture as a hand sign where any (instrument) manipulation is excluded. are partially or completely concerned by the topic of musical gestures. Should one thus exclude the notion of gesture from these rich. or as definition B. Although potentially restrictive as explained above. It is not sufficient to recognize that "The gestures that are fed to the instrument are of a physical nature (fingering. etc. One may also note that in B. Wanderley and M. complex and subtle actions of our members and our bodies. One can see from these examples that the notion of musical gesture may be completely independent from the idea of gesture as an actual human movement. considered as containing information. etc. The "musical gesture" would then correspond. definitions B. to an ensemble of observable features between the level of elementary signal analysis and the lowest level of musical intention analysis.) whereas the gestures resulting from our auditory perception are not. but is this sufficient to justify the use of the "label" gesture in both cases? Moreover. and the gestures used for its creation are of a richness. M. or suggested. water. On the other hand.3.a and B. puts together the matter – and the object is not just information. there certainly exists a similarity in the abstraction level.
It is a function of the perception of the different body affordances in a musical context. that eventually lead to subsequent gesture typologies tied to each specific context. as we already stated. it is important to explicit the description of basic properties and the characterization of each gesture.). comparing the act of writing to that of speaking: "La situation est toute autre dans le cas de l'écriture [par rapport au langage]. Quelle que soit la manière d'écrire. M. hands. functional analysis. © 2000. The multiple complementary definitions are tied up to their original context and therefore valid in their own right. for instance. but also serve as the general support (stability) for the instrument. it also seems important to make a distinction between signifiant and signified. [Cadoz94b] An attempt is proposed by Christophe Ramstein [Ramstein91] and consists in the analysis of instrumental gestures through three approaches: • A phenomenological approach (a descriptive analysis). such as considering gesture in music as only a hand sign. is based on the conditions of gesture production by the performer. spatial and frequential. eds. one can reasonably state that there cannot exist one single (simple!) definition of the term gesture. whilst other body parts have transport and/or accompanist roles. It will be analyzed later in this paper with the introduction of the concept of instrumental gestures. Battier. let us first quote a paragraph from an article.e. is to discuss human-human and/or human-machine communication through gestures in a musical context. As a complement to the perception of body affordances by the player. the third approach. for instance: large (arm movement) or small (finger movement). Analysis of different gestures The main point of this article. The cinematic criterion consists in the analysis of the movement speed. the hand as a means of fine action and perception due to its dexterity and number of nervous receptors. a discussion of the first and second approaches is developed in detail. Ircam Centre Pompidou 74 . wrists. etc. and c) Lateral action – side to side movement. refers to the possible functions a gesture may perform in a specific situation. it is usual to progress from a pure description of the phenomenon (phenomenological modeling) to a comprehension of the original (causal) mechanism involved in the process (structural modeling). In order to situate the question. the spatial criterion consists in the size of the space where the gesture takes place. arms. Wanderley and M. or respectively gestures effectively produced and gestures evoked through listening. In order to analyze the diversity of trajectories and gestural behaviors of different actions within a system (fingers. the direct or indirect reference to human physical behavior tends to be the common denominator to all the notions. Finally. One may initially note that. one may notice the importance of understanding the basic physiological behavior of the human body when modeling the interaction between man and a machine. • An intrinsic approach (from the musician's point of view). les doigts et des structures nerveu- Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. one can also consider for instance the importance of the general relation to the player's environment [CLF81] [CLF84]. In essence. The second approach. • A functional approach. Phenomenological Analysis From the previous discussion on the different gesture definitions presented in the beginning of this article. the feet as mostly suited to the performance of slower and more static movements. The frequential criterion takes into account movement decomposition regarding its frequential content. However. b) Vertical action – where gravity accentuates or opposes a gesture. i. by Paolo Viviani [Viviani98]. although one must be aware of common traps such as simplistic dichotomous notions or too focused definitions. when modeling this relationship. nous employons essentiellement les mains. three action groups have been proposed as a) Frontal action – moving away or towards a device. intrinsic analysis.Gesture – General Framework From the above exposed.M. The first (phenomenological) approach is based on three criteria: cinematic. Furthermore. roughly between some tenths of a hertz to 10 Hz. In the next sections.
• Intentional movements. n'ont pas subi des modifications adaptatives pour assumer cette nouvelle tâche. Massion devises the following movement types: 2. manual grasp. The situation is completely different in the case of writing [compared to that of speaking]. All the difficulty of the task comes from the fact of being forced to use the available means — the generic capacities of the motor system — in order to master a gestural code as arbitrary as the one used to play the harp. It is interesting to notice that intermediate cases exist and that some muscular fibers can change their categories in response to physical exercises. Justement. They can be classified according to force produced and to the speed of contraction and relaxation in slow or fast units [BGRS94]. This fact has a positive point: it gives us the facility of choosing the writing technique — from the Acadian stylus to computer keyboards — but also a negative one: we know extremely well what it means to spend the most beautiful years of our childhood learning to write. Analyzing intentional movements.ses qui. throws. the reader being referred to the original text for a complete discussion. where anticipation constraints dominate. not only have evolved for other goals... [Translated by the authors] Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. Independently from the type of writing.Centre Pompidou 75 . such as the equilibrium. toute la difficulté de la tâche [écriture] tient au fait de devoir utiliser les moyens de bord — les capacités génériques du système moteur — pour maîtriser un code gestuel aussi arbitraire que celui employé pour jouer de la harpe. fingers and nervous structures that. resulting in: • Reflex movements. but mainly have not suffered adaptive modifications in order to assure this new task. it is common to oppose human movements as slow movements. It will be summarized here in order to give an idea of the different types of human movements. The same idea is sometimes expressed [Goldstein98] in terms of "Current control" – sustained movements that can be controlled while they are performed and "Ballistic control" – short and energetic movements. such as [Massion97]. Wanderley and M. on the other hand are able to contract/relax quickly producing a significant effort. © 2000. Ircam . we essentially use the hands. • Automatic movements. and manipulation and fast movements. such as jumps. mais surtout. produce a small effort and are less sensitive to fatigue. nous laissant une grande souplesse dans le choix des techniques d'écriture — du stylus acadien au clavier des ordinateurs — mais aussi un côté négatif : nous ne le connaissons que trop bien pour avoir passé les plus belles années de notre enfance à apprendre à écrire. The first distinction is related to the origin of the movement being performed: passive and active movement.2" As we have already stated. that mainly present problems of regulation. Basic types of movement In the analysis of motor behavior [BGRS94]. Muscular activity: Motor Units Motor units are the basic functional elements of muscular activity. Another distinction relates to the nature of the movement performed. but being more sensitive to fatigue.M. both at the level of its physical behavior and of its cognitive processes. that can be either: • triggered or • auto-initialized. This means that the study of gestures (in the broad sense) could hardly be dissociated from the study of the human motor system's properties. which are able to produce small efforts for extended time. • Slow motor units have a limited contraction speed. They are present for instance in postural muscles. A complete description of the characteristics of movement can be found in specialized texts. Ceci a un côté positif. • Fast motor units. non seulement. Let us therefore review some concepts related to the production of gestures from other domains. and strikes. Battier. ont évolué dans d'autres buts. M. we are here precisely interested in the case of playing an instrument. eds.
This means that. la fixation des paramètres étant assurée par des processus indépendants du programme. une fois sélectionnée.• Simple or complex (mono or pluri-articular). fixed at the time of execution. • Slow movements. accompany and follow the execution of the movement in an automatic manner" and later in the same page: "… What is seen as just a static form is the result of a dynamical process [. this structure generates a sequence of commands which pre-established order is not modifiable by sensory information. 785]3. Ircam Centre Pompidou 76 . © 2000. correspondant à un geste particulier. static or dynamical. • With or without feedback. p. and c) execution of the movement. In fact. stored in the cortex. once selected. defined by Viviani as: "Il s'agit d'une structure abstraite. Finally. postural muscular activities. the fixation of the parameters being assured by processes independent from the program. déterminent les aspects spatio-temporels du geste et les synergies musculaires nécessaires. • Isometric (in order to produce a force) or Isotonic (in order to produce a displacement). Riehle points out [Riehle98]. qui spécifie les rapports topologiques et séquentiels entre ses composantes . 603]. "The coordination between posture and movement condition the efficiency of the gesture. the same differentiation expressed above as slow/fast or current/ballistic movements. Gesture and posture Posture and gesture co-occur. Les déterminants métriques et temporels du geste. may also be proposed as three types: • Pure ballistic movements. stockée dans le cortex. the intention of writing gives place to an abstract representation of the desired form. ne sont pas spécifiés explicitement par le programme. that specifies the topological and sequential relations between its components. Stated another way. ainsi que les groupes musculaires impliqués dans son exécution.] One recognizes in the form of the muscles the fixed representation of the forces they deploy". the research on cognitive psychology has allowed the identification of three operation phases of the central nervous system with respect to motor behavior: a) selection of response that best adapts to the situation from a repertoire of possible responses. determine the spatio-temporal aspects of the gesture and the necessary muscular synergies. as well as the muscular groups implied in its execution. • Slow or fast. • Discrete (one element or one sequence of elements) or rhythmic. Gesture production As A. M. responsible for the observable mechanics of gesture. It just foresees a group of qualitative and quantitative parameters that. The metrical and temporal determinants of the gesture. fixés au moment de l'exécution. This last one is at the origin of the activation of muscular command. • With or without a defined goal. another interesting physiological aspect of gestures is that of the motor equivalence principle: the form (geometrical relations) of a gesture is preserved independently from the articulations and muscular groups that generate it. anticipate. Wanderley and M.M. This is made explicit by the notion of motor program. 3.." [Viviani94. even before being formulated as a sequence of muscular commands. Celui-ci prévoit un ensemble de paramètres qualitatifs et quantitatifs qui. in its metrical and topological relations. cette structure engendre une séquence de commandes dont l'ordre préétabli n'est pas modifiable par les afférences sensorielles. • Rapid movements with "breaking" and final adjustment. Coming back to the research originally developed on writing [Viviani94]. According to [BGRS94.. p. Battier. b) definition of the characteristics of the selected response. this principle suggests that the motor system codes the formal aspects of the gesture in a register separate from that where the muscular synergies are specified." [Translated by the authors] Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. corresponding to a specific gesture. " It is an abstract structure. eds. are not explicitly specified by the program.
and finally shortly discuss ancillary gestures specifically in the case of the clarinet playing technique. paper or blackboard) would take approximately the same time to be completed [Berthoz97].bow. in the case of conducting gestures. and would not necessarily make sense when applied to other types of gestural interaction.and signal-independent: • Trajectory-based primitives: e. 4. The author proposes three types of gestural primitives. We will here speak generally about the gestures of an instrumentalist playing his instrument. This can be seen. such as the case of sound installations or virtual reality settings. This point of view may be very well suited to the case of non-traditional human-machine interaction in music (man-musical instrument). quasi-periodic movements. 5. changes of orientation. each of the above primitives may "embed other movements.Another aspect of human movements shown by the research in experimental psychology is the relation between the speed and the curvature of a movement's trajectory: the bigger the curvature the slower the speed [Viviani94]. Ancillary gestures. but as shown in the previous sections of this paper. Battier. we stress that this approach is tied to the case of instrument playing. or instrumental gestures [Cadoz88].g. let us cite another property of human movements. This area has been extensively researched. © 2000. for instance. in the absence of an explicit temporal constraint. where the baton moves faster in straight lines than in curved trajectories. This means that the same gesture executed in different scales (e. while they distinguish the primary intention of a performer.g. mimics. Delalande suggests that accompanist gestures should not be analyzed strictly from a motor control point of view — he considers that its function is as related to imagination as to the effective production of the sound. there are many different (divergent) directions when it comes to the musical context5. Finally. as F. Again. without any higher level analysis of them – such as gesture meaning or function. are present and part of top-level performers. etc. It states that.g. that of isochrony [Viviani94]. blow. This natural kinetic modulation would have its origin in the neural mechanisms commanding the movement. eds. Delalande has proposed in [Delalande88]. See Choi's article on gestural primitives in this volume. • Pattern-based primitives: e. Three Level Gesture Classiﬁcation: In an interesting study on the playing technique of the late pianist Glenn Gould. and not in the muscles themselves [Reyraud98]. for instance. According to Insook Choi [Choi98]4. Ircam . where gesture functions may be hard to define or even meaningless. Furthermore. M. "from purely functional to purely symbolic": Effective gesture . gradient movements. elbow movements.g. press a key. one could analyze gestures based on a purely functional approach. Those three types are considered as having dominant (but not mutually exclusive) movement properties. • Force-based primitives: e.necessary to mechanically produce the sound . François Delalande [Delalande88] proposed a division of the notion of gesture in three levels. the mean speed of a gesture is related to the length of the its trajectory.chest. although not produced intentionally in order to generate or modulate sound. etc. then focus on the effective gestures used to play an instrument.body movements associated to effective gestures . both device. Gestural Primitives are "fundamental human movements that relate the human subject to dynamic responses in an environment".M.Centre Pompidou 77 ." Functional Analysis Moving to another level. Wanderley and M. Gestural Primitives A natural sequence of what has been exposed so far about the physiological properties of movement would be to define basic movement characteristics in a musical context by means of their primary properties. breathing for a piano player. Accompanist gesture . Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music.
and vocal) in that it is both a means of action on the physical world and a means of communication of information. In the first function. the third function. Stated another way. Wanderley and M. the gestural channel has a double direction — emission and reception of information. Furthermore. In order to do so. is that of meaning.a melodic balance. © 2000. let us study in detail the first level proposed by Delalande. In this article we are mostly interested in the physical actions of the player and therefore we will not consider the third level. etc. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. in the light of the theory on instrumental gestures. natural gesture. Note that we're not considering temperature sensitivity. Ircam Centre Pompidou 78 . Another characteristic specific to instrumental gesture is that it is produced by the "gestural channel". we'll concentrate on the first level and quickly comment on accompanist gestures. of communicative intent. eds. etc. We will consider "instrumental gesture" as a subgroup of F. two facts can be initially remarked: 1) the need for instrument stability during the performance and 2) the existence of an energy continuum between the gesture and the perceived phenomena. there is no communication of information but only energy communication between the hand and the object. Actually. semiotic. Considering the gestural channel. one can identify [Cadoz94a] three different functions associated with it. is typically performed by our capacity of touch and muscular/ articulatory sensitivity. the gestural channel is specific in the sense that it is twice double [Cadoz94a]: 1) it allows both communicative and interactive relations and 2) it allows simultaneous emission and reception of information. modification and transformation of the environment — the ergotic function. auditory. pantomime. whilst the third is completely symbolic.or emptyhanded gestures — sign-language. Battier. in the sense that we need to be in contact with an object. It may also be present with the other two functions.Figurative gesture . gesticulation. It's the gestural function per se — actually. 6. where all three functions are interdependent.M. The first two proposed levels correspond to physical actions of the instrumentalist. Finally. mostly in the case of the clarinet playing technique. The second function. Forces applied to the object cause deformation and displacement and part of the applied energy is fed back to the gestural channel. Let us analyze these functions by using the example of the hand — the primary organ associated to the gestural channel. Delalande's three-tier gesture classification (effective gesture). • perception of the environment — the epistemic function. • communication of information towards the environment — the semiotic function. the epistemic function is based on both the cutaneous and muscular perceptions [Roll94]. developed by the first author and collaborators [Gibet97] [Cadoz88] [Cadoz/Ramstein91] [Ramstein91] [Cadoz94a] [Cadoz99]. epistemic. It is therefore impossible to dissociate action from perception. This function is always related to the first (ergotic). Instrumental Gesture Considering the context of traditional musical instruments. for instance in instrument manipulation.6 It is important to remember that the simple cutaneous tactile perception (touch) is just one part of the epistemic function. i. Gestural Channel The gestural channel is unique if compared to other human communication channels (visual. but that are nevertheless complementary and dependent on each other: • material action. ergotic. the actual instrument manipulation and playing technique. In this second role. M.perceived by the audience but without a clear correspondence to a physical movement . that is the only function associated to gesture in the sense of free. The ergotic function is the one that allows the differentiation between communicative and interactive goals of the gesture.e.
the proposed instrumental gesture categories are neither exclusive nor independent. specific (physical) phenomena are produced. One can use here the notion of interactive gesture as opposed to unidirectional gesture (exclusively semiotic). eds. in the instrumental situation all communication channels can be simultaneously requested. the instrumental gesture. contrary to other communication situations. One can observe this singularity by considering instrumental gestures associated to the production of music. as we are going to see later in this article. the first author proposed [Cadoz88] a classification of instrumental gesture based on its function as: • Excitation gesture. This inter-dependency of the three functions is. © 2000. The same holds true for conductor gestures. In fact. à la fois. Analyzing the diversity of musical instruments in detail. Furthermore. whose forms and dynamic evolution can be mastered by the subject. what characterizes the gestural channel.7 Instrumental Gesture Typology Based on the above considerations.M. since they only posses one of the three functions of the gestural channel. displacement. determining the nature of the information conveyed by the user (a combination of the tool's properties and the user's intentions). since musicians use their tactile-kinesthetic perception in order to play an instrument. They are therefore singular in that they posses. there is no direct energy transfer between the conductor and the listener. epistemic and semiotic.Centre Pompidou 79 . Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. the semiotic function. Wanderley and M. as we've already cited above. let's analyze some different types of gestures and place them in comparison to instrumental gestures: • Empty-handed gestures are not instrumental. except for a very reduced number of instruments where no physical contact with the instrument takes place (as the theremin. since even if they may consist of a manipulation of an object (the baton). Let us now consider different situations in human-instrument interaction. M. Instrumental Gestures . making use of objects (tools) in order to convey information.deﬁnition Instrumental gesture is defined as a modality specific to the gestural channel. Let us now analyze instrumental gestures based on a typology according to their function (functional analysis) with respect to the instrument. The tool in this case is therefore a conditioning agent for those gestures. • These phenomena may then become the support for communicational messages and/or be the basis for the production of a material action. Based on this definition. Finally. one can then consider instrumental gestures as epistemic. and so on. feet. complementary to emptyhanded gestures ("geste à nu") and characterized as follows: • It is applied to a material object and there exists physical interaction with it. Instrumental gesture is considered as a "communication modality" complementary to empty-handed gestures. etc.) are in direct contact with the instrument by means of manipulation. • Writing or drawing are instrumental gestures. in the real situation. all three characteristics of the gestural channel: ergotic. But. in many cases one action may present two or more of the proposed functions to different degrees. 7. Ircam . percussion. Instrumental gestures are therefore intrinsically semiotic. for instance). and particularly one of its modalities. It should be obvious that. a number of possibilities for converting (instrumental) gestures into musical information come to mind. • In this physical interaction. Battier. Note only that it is important to keep in mind that the objective of the typology is to provide a pedagogical tool for the comprehension of the instrumental gesture phenomena as well as an aid for the design of gestural controllers.It is useful to remark again that the three functions presented above as separate and mutually exclusive are in fact inter-dependent in reality. instrumental gesture is also ergotic – the hands (or lips. in the sense that they address the listeners' ears and that one can judge the information being conveyed (sound). There is energy being transferred to the object (instrument) and from the object as a reaction.
We will here consider the case of three traditional acoustic instruments: the cello.e. • Selection gesture. The excitation. It may be either: • instantaneous (percussive or picking). the vibrating structure is displaced from its initial rest position and when left to itself it starts to vibrate. © 2000. • structural. One can differentiate between picking and striking. left hand rotation movement is a selection gesture. M. One can consider two possibilities: either sequential or parallel selection. For an analysis of the bowing techniques in a cello from an ergonomic point of view. when the modification is related to categorical differences. Modification gestures may be either: • parametric (or continuous). in the case of traditional bowing techniques:8 9 • Right hand (bow) movement is an exciter gesture. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. They represent general functions present in instrument manipulation techniques that may be found in different instrumental situations. Ircam Centre Pompidou 80 .• Modification gesture. This gesture differs from the previous ones (excitation and modification) in that it neither provides energy to the resulting sound nor modification of any of the instrument's properties. modification and selection gestures make up the basis of the instrumental gesture typology. The first author [Cadoz94a] even suggests a parallel between these elements and those of a language (noun. such as the insertion/ removal of an extra part (a mute in the case of the trumpet. verb and adjective): excitation gestures would be related to the verb. the reader is directed to [Isart99]. This modification affects the relation between the excitation gesture and the sound and therefore introduces another expressive dimension. 8. the bagpipe and the clarinet.M. In a complex instrument. 9. eds. Let's analyze these functions in more detail: Excitation gesture is the one that provides the energy that will eventually be present in the perceived phenomena. and selection gestures to the noun. when both the gesture and the sound co-exist. A distinction can be made between a continuous gesture that produces a continuous excitation and a continuous gesture that. Battier. • continuous. In the second case the structure starts vibrating straight after the initial (usually short duration) contact. i. It can be either continuous or discrete (for instance in a violin or a guitar. Case Studies By analyzing the expert interaction of players and acoustical instruments. In the first case. structure and function of the information phenomena produced. Case study 1: The Cello In a first analysis. Modification gesture is related to the modification of the instrument's properties. Wanderley and M. Selection gesture is the one that consists of a choice among multiple similar elements in an instrument. there exists a silent contact phase. We next apply this typology to real-world instruments in a series of case studies. As the first author points out [Cadoz94a]. applied to specific objects. one could consider. sometimes in a very subtle way. when there's a continuous variation of a parameter. respectively). since the gestural processes in these cases are different [Cadoz99]. modification gestures are determining elements with respect to the form. modification gestures to the adjective. or a register in an organ). The sound starts when the gesture finishes. • Left hand linear movement is a parametric modification gesture. produces a sequence of discrete excitations [Cadoz99]. such as vibrato. we may gain an insight into the advantages and limitations of the proposed typology of instrumental gestures. instrumental gestures build up phrases where these three elements combine. without any substantial expense of energy being transferred to the final sound. See article by Serafin and Dudas in this volume. for instance.
one should keep embouchure values low. different instrumental gestures collaborate to a single musical functionality. and can therefore be considered to a certain extent as a parametric modification gesture. © 2000. the modulation wheel.Considering it in more detail.excitation gesture. the right hand also performs a selection by means of hand rotation of the string to be excited. let's discuss a first-order model of a saxophone/clarinet. but the blowing would be a gesture that provides the initial state for the system. Breath pressure (considered as resulting from the difference in pressure described above. but also defines the excursion of the resulting loudness output. etc. In order to produce a large excursion on timbral and loudness values. We could then consider these gestures also as parametric modification gestures. It is interesting to note that the dimensions of the instrumental gesture space do not always present an isomorphic relation to those of the perceptive space. M. This fact illustrates the complementarity of the instrumental gesture categories in real-life instrumental situations. it affects the way the exciter gesture works. one type of instrumental gesture (such as parametric modification) does not necessarily match one perceptive parameter (such as pitch). Considering each available output variable from a Yamaha WX710: • Breath pressure . the amount of bow hair in contact with the string. eds.. • Key value (fingering) . For both the right hand.M.as done in order to tune the clarinet before performance. for modification (choice of a string length) and string selection. but also controlling amplitude vibrato. In the case of a tight embouchure. This description applies to a controller. Case study 3: The Bagpipe The same analysis could be made for the bagpipe: blowing is a biasing gesture since it makes available the air that will eventually be forced through the reed from arm pressure on the bag. In an acoustic single-reed instrument. Wanderley and M. that outputs three independent MIDI data streams.selection gesture. even a great variation of breath pressure will not produce a comparable timbral nor loudness variation. Let's now analyse a real clarinet: • Breath pressure is an exciter gesture. Consequently. 10. it is known that the air flow through the reed is dependent on the difference between the pressure inside the mouth and the pressure inside the mouthpiece. sustaining the air column vibration.Disregarding variables not related to the acoustical instrument behavior.e. Ircam . One could then classify this pressure as the exciter gesture. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music.g. but it is well known that glissandi can be produced by partially opening the holes. What will probably happen in the case of strong blowing is a clamping of the reed and therefore the stopping of sound production. • Changing the size of the instrument's tube is a structural modulation gesture . • Lip pressure . for a certain embouchure value [Benade90] [RWDD97]. for excitation and string selection. where one gesture accounts for one musical function. where the performer chooses specific keys for selecting a pitch (note).parametric modification gesture.Centre Pompidou 81 . i. e. These two gestures are inter-dependent in a reed instrument. Case study 2: The Clarinet and a MIDI Wind Controller As another example of the instrumental gesture's typology. in the case of a MIDI wind controller) is thus related to a particular embouchure value. It will control frequency vibrato and also timbral/amplitude changes. • Lip pressure (embouchure) is a parametric modification gesture. or a squeal. since it affects the instrument's pitch (frequency vibrato). the excitation gesture presents many degrees of freedom: the force applied. Battier. Also. the arm linear excursion. • Fingering is a selection gesture. and the left hand.
13. an ACROE production (1990). Wanderley and M. M. since they may be interrelated. Video available in the original CD-Rom version. © 2000. and so it does not seem possible to separate gestures into different independent classes for all existing instruments. rehearsals or concerts). The Analysis of Video Recordings In order to study ancillary gestures. recorded in 1993. Thanks to Marc Battier for providing the film. for instance) in a non-linear way. is always necessary to the instrument's traditional behavior and that it alters the effect of other gestures (blowing. Examples of the use of such typologies are the pioneering Retroactive Gestural Transducers (TGR – transducteur gestuel rétroactif) developed at ACROE in Grenoble by J. Accompanist Gestures After having analyzed what Delalande [Delalande88] has called effective gestures. mostly regarding the presence of different types of feedback related to different gestures. one can consider another gestural function. 12.I would like to thank the copyright owners who kindly agreed on the usage of this video for this research. This means that embouchure.Biasing Function Depending on the acoustic instrument analyzed. in 1985.11 • A video of Marc Battier's12 clarinet piece Mixed Media13. is then complementary to the previous functions in the specific case of some acoustic instruments. Texts by Annie Luciani. let us now discuss another type of (wind) instrumentalist's gestures. The second author has studied the gestural vocabulary of clarinet players. specifically gestures such as moving the instrument whilst playing. one needs to keep the embouchure in a certain range in order to produce any sound at all (at least in order to produce oscillation). in the case of a reed instrument. Unfortunately. These gestures have been called non-obvious or ancillary gestures [Wanderley99a]. some preliminary results tend to show that some of these movements seem to present patterns that are consistently repeated by the player in different circumstances (i. The need for gesture typologies One can conclude that for a real instrument. as seen above. biasing gesture.M. that of reaching and continously maintaining a part of the instrument in an operation point.-L. This extra gestural function. in the case of the clarinet. Excerpt from Le geste et l'outil. the name of the player could not be found. Delalande has called them accompanist gestures. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. Ircam Centre Pompidou 82 . Although this study still consists in a work in progress. eds. it is not always simple to classify gestures according to independent functions. this time not primarily produced in order to generate sound. The importance of gesture typologies is then not to completely describe acoustic musical instruments but to provide general guidelines for the design of gestural input devices. we have undertaken the analysis of existing video recordings of concerts and rehearsals by different players: • A video of clarinetist Alain Damiens playing Pierre Boulez's piece Domaines. Although strictly consisting of a parametric modification gesture. its function in this case could not be reduced to just the modification of the instrument's properties without taking into account its absolute necessity. 11.e. More specifically. Battier. realized by Alain Bos. Florens and collaborators from 1978 onwards [Florens78] [CLF81].
M.-G. usually in an upward direction during long sustained notes. • Slow continuous gestures.Centre Pompidou 83 . by Zack Settel • Praescio IV. The total time of the sequence of figures corresponds to less than one second. sometimes presenting circular patterns. 1999. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. and to J. Thanks to Philippe Depalle for the video recording. Damiens playing Domaines Considering the first video in detail. there are mainly three movements occurring at specific moments: • Changes in posture at the beginning and during phrases. generally increasing in amplitude with an increase in the note's dynamics. 1. A. McGill University on May 18. 14. Boisvert for his kind agreement on the usage of these videos. Damiens playing Domaines. at Pollack Hall. This can be seen from the comparison of the same section played during warm up and during rehearsal (see below). As seen in a later section. © 2000. Detailed Analysis An analysis of the three videos reveals certain gestural patterns. Much of the following results are drawn from [Wanderley99a] and from the second author's PhD thesis (to appear).• A video of clarinetist Jean-Guy Boisvert performing three pieces for clarinet and electronics. by Pierre Boulez. 15. the movements seemed to correlate to the musical section actually played. Battier. some patterns seem to be produced by different players. whilst others seem to be rather idiosyncratic. by Bruce Pennycook The following figures show six shots of the first video recording. Fig. Ircam .M. by Alcides Lanza • Eschroadepipel. at Ircam in 1985. As will be seen later in detail. One can note the upward movement of the instrument. Wanderley and M.15 A.14 • Ektenes III. • Fast sweeping movements of the bell that mainly accompany short staccato notes. eds.
Fig. Boisvert) performs different gestures.M. -G.Mixed Media Performance Analyzing the data from the second clarinet player. Wanderley and M. but changes in posture seemed to be more frequent. One can note the posture differences between the shots. 2. 3. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. both round/upwards gestures during sustained notes and also sweeping fast gestures. Fig. Ircam Centre Pompidou 84 . a clarinet player would tend to move or not.-G. as opposed to the second player. 1993. by Alcides Lanza. The next three shots show a sequence of movements taken from the video. J. Nevertheless. in Montréal.-G. Recordings of J. not many fast gestures were found in the second video. eds. Posture differences were also noticed. 1999. it can be seen that continuous movements may also be found in sustained notes. Boisvert The third player (J. Furthermore. M. Mixed Media performance in Japan. Boisvert playing Ektenes III. the third of the pieces played by Mr. © 2000. Battier. Boisvert is performed with the clarinet player seated. This is an interesting point considering that one could wonder whether whilst seated.
Repetition of Equivalent Movement Patterns As could be expected. eds. Boisvert playing Praescio IV. J. 5. 1985. there seems to exist a correlation between the melody played and the movements performed. 1999. As an example. original – are shown in the next figure. Ircam . Wanderley and M. in Montréal. by Bruce Pennycook. Damiens playing Domaines. two phrases repeated twice in the first film – in the introductory credits and later during the piece Cahier D. Fig. A. Battier. at Ircam.M. © 2000. M. Fig.-G. Boulez. The first two shots (above) show a melody played during the warm up (introductory Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. by P.Centre Pompidou 85 . Note the tendency to reproduce the bell up movement in the two sequences of shots. 4.The following sequence of 6 shots shows a 5-second movement – note the differences in posture and the position of the instrument with respect to the microphone.
Finally. both in the general literature on human-computer and human-human interaction and in the musical domain. the Brazilian Research Fund. Thanks also to Philippe Depalle for the video recordings and for many suggestions regarding the second authors work. A model of this influence can then be used as part of a virtual model of a clarinet. Conclusions This article presented a review of different concepts associated with the word gesture. Instead. Pierre Dutrieu and Norbert Schnell have also contributed with criticism and suggestions. and examples of both gesture classification types in a musical context were presented.credits of the film).)? • The correlation of certain gestures to breathing? • Is there a correspondence between these gestures and other gestures humans make. among others: • What is the exact influence of the player's technical level (beginner. eds. from all the given definitions. professional) and of the context (concert. This work is partly supported by a grant from the CNPq. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. A functional classification of gestures in an instrumental performance context have been reviewed. Many thanks to Emily Morin for proofreading. Ircam Centre Pompidou 86 . François Delalande. Wanderley and M. for instance. both phenomenological and functional classifications. 16. Let us again make clear that we do not intend throughout this research to express any judgement about the playing technique of the different clarinet players. Furthermore. Acknowledgements The second author would like to thank all clarinet performers and video copyright owners for the shots included in this article. we tried to point out their basic features and to stress the context in which they belong. Goals of this research The main interest of this research is twofold:16 • The first point of interest is the understanding of why these gestures take place and whether there can be repeatable patterns across different players. other points are also important. semi-professional. © 2000. a summary of information that may prove helpful if someone is to understand the basics of gesture production by a human-performer. Comments on various gesture classifications were provided. rehearsal. The theory on instrumental gestures has been illustrated by the introduction of case studies confirming and/or challenging it. We have also reviewed many related points from other disciplines such as physiology and experimental psychology. a discussion on accompanist performer gestures has been introduced and examples of clarinet performances discussed. whilst speaking? • The second point of interest of this approach consists in the fact that.M. Battier. audience size. We have purposely avoided providing another definition of gesture. depending on recording conditions – specifically for close microphone positions — these types of gestures may influence the sound obtained in the recording [Wanderley99b]. Joseph Butch Rovan. Our intention is merely to try to understand the mechanism of gesture production by the players and the correlation to other studies on gesture. due to the idiosyncrasies of each field. The second two shots (below) show the same melody played during the performance. M. but this corpus of research should be carefully examined and adapted in order to be used in the musical domain. Xavier Rodet. etc. We have seen that there is a massive corpus of research on gestures. particularly a complete description of the first author's work on instrumental gestures.
from Medieval Latin gestura mode of action. gesture n." In Semiotic Review of Books. [LL. any action or posture intended to express an idea or a passion. Significant movement of limb or body. eds. gerere.b The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary. esp in prayer or worship. to bear. or opinion. use of such movements as expression of feeling or rhetorical device.com. A. act. posture. 1975. Kendon. 2. bearing] n 1 bodily movement expressing or emphasizing an idea or emotion . attitude. as a symbol or token. I. 2. Gesticulate.b. Manner of carrying the body. Home Page: http:// Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music.] 1. 2 act conveying intention. Gesture \Ges"ture\. Pronunciation: 'jes-ch&r.d WWWebster Dictionary. action.Function: noun Etymology: Middle Eng. express thus. Now only: movement of the body or limbs as an expression of feeling. assertion. … SYN n attitude. gesture [ML gestura posture.2.. © 2000. BEARING 2 : a movement usually of the body or limbs that expresses or emphasizes an idea.1. now only as expressive of thought or feeling. ~v.1. 'jesh. 1979 Bantam Books Inc. 2. Use expressive motion of limbs or body with or instead of speech . gesticulation. from Latin gestus. A motion of the body or limbs expressive of sentiment or passion. M. Main Entry: 1 ges·ture.Dictionary Deﬁnitions A. gestum. n. Wanderley and M. position of the body or limbs. See Gest a deed. 1973. L. or attitude 3 : the use of motions of the limbs or body as a means of expression 4 : something said or done by way of formality or courtesy. or to enforce or emphasize an argument. sentiment. gesticulate v. posture. posture. (after Fr.Centre Pompidou 87 . Oxford University Press. 4.1. gestura mode of action. geste) Step or move calculated to evoke response from another or convey (esp.Gestures and Speech A. 1996. at: http://www.a A. 3.1. perform.m-w. Battier. Friendly) intention.E.Appendix A Review of General Deﬁnitions of Gesture 1.1. gesture M. Parrington> A.c The Scribner-Bantam English Dictionary. Ircam .e Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913). Back A. A movement of the body or any part of it. "An Agenda for Gesture Studies. fr. A. past participle of gerere Date: 15th century 1 : archaic : CARRIAGE. L. Oxford University Press. 2.a The Chancellor Illustrated Family Encyclopedic Dictionary.M. or for its effect on the attitudes of others <a political gesture to draw popular support — V. behave.
Mass. Handwriting is not a gesture because the motion of the hand expresses nothing. hand gestures that co-occur with spoken language.utoronto. Reading. we employ the definition: "a gesture is a movement of one's body that conveys meaning to oneself or to a partner in communication. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. because it is a necessity to move your hand. Pressing a key on a keyboard is not a gesture because…" … Therefore. 1999. 1999. However. R." That partner can be a human or a computer. eds.b J. The way you move your hand to reach this point is not important. orientation changes. Beckoning with your index finger is a gesture. eds. and so forth).Gesture in HCI A. Cambridge (UK): Cambridge University Press. Hummels. Battier. Kurtenbach and E. Laurel (ed.2. Gesture: for the purpose of this paper it is sufficient to understand "gestures" as body movements which convey information that is in some way meaningful to a recipient. 1998.M. but it does not contribute to the final product as such. Pressing a key on a keyboard is not a gesture because the motion of a finger on its way to hitting the key is neither observed nor significant. Meaning is information that contributes to a specific goal.html. because these contribute to the creation of the final product. Waving goodbye is a gesture.ca/epc/srb/srb/gesture. describing the surface of an object or using the object are considered to be gestures. self-manipulations. Gesture Workshop GW'99.c I. Overbeeke. Using your hand to show the motion of a falling leaf is a gesture. Wachsmuth.a G. Directing traffic is a gesture language. its peak structure. A. postural adjustments. 1998. Sign languages are made up of gestures. Cipolla and A. Waving goodbye is a gesture." In Computer Vision in HumanMachine Interaction. 3. The same words could have been typed – the hand motion would not be the same but the meaning conveyed would be. Wanderley and M.3.3. © 2000. All that matters is which key was pressed. it is only the resultant words that convey the information. Smets and K. A. 1990. Hulteen. 17. 1998. I am addressing in this paper one very particular use of the term "gesture" — that is. Wachsmuth and M. A teenager flailing at a video game joystick is not gesturing but rather is operating a controller that senses in which of eight possible directions a stick is being pushed. "Gestures in Human-Computer Interaction. boundaries and symmetry." In I.b C. "Communicative Rhythm in Gesture and Speech.3. Cassell." In B.: Addison-Wesley. Ircam Centre Pompidou 88 . Most definitions of gesture boil down to the definition of Kurtenbach and Hulteen (1990) "A gesture is a motion of the body that contains information. "An Intuitive Two-Handed Gestural interface for Computer Supported Product Design. A." Invited talk. Pentland. For gestural product design. p. These characteristics are: the excursion of a gesture (move away and return to a rest position). M. 17 A.www. G. "A Framework for Gesture Generation and Interpretation. getting one's hand to the place to start creation or manipulation is not considered a gesture. 198.): The Art of Human-Computer Interaction. This 'strand' of activity (which we also refer to when we use the term 'gesture' or 'gesticulation') has certain characteristics which distinguish it from other kinds of activity (such as practical actions. page 310 A gesture is a motion of the body that contains information. Fröhlich (eds): Gesture and Sign Language in Human-Computer Interaction.chass.
These objects will be referred to as musical gestures and they should be seen as the features based on which musical intentions will eventually be recovered through some decision making." Available at: http://isgwww.N. energy. etc. MIT. Gesture. 1996. a combination of dynamic and static gesturing is performed accompanied by facial expressions. eds. A gesture is a series of postures over time that also includes information about hand orientation and location in space. … The gestures that are fed to the instrument are of a physical nature (fingering. The similarity of their level of abstraction motivated the author to label them both as Musical Gestures. Godenschweger and T. both present the ability to communicate musical intentions at a higher level than an audio wave form. Drake. Edwards." Science et Vie Magazine.D. hors série. "Modeling and Generating Sign Language as Animated Line Drawings. 1996." In Progress in Gestural Interaction.Centre Pompidou 89 . Strothotte." PhD thesis.) whereas the gestures resulting from our auditory perception are not. the body movement and the facial expression. 1. location in space and any movement are not included. Ircam .de/~godens/publications/asset. M. let us again analyze different researches on gestures.Gesture and Sign-Language A.cs. what would be missing in those definitions in order to characterize gesture in music? In order to develop a deeper understanding of the meaning of gesture in the musical context.4. 75-88. "Geste musical" (musical gesture) is used as the equivalent of performer actions.4. The movements are carried out smoothly with varying velocity and controlled timing. Hand orientation.4. Métois. Appendix B Concepts of Gesture in the Musical Domain The definitions presented in the previous section relate to various fields.1. There is a diversified set of objects spanning the gap between the lowest-level musical intention (cognition. Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. B.M.a E. "Musical Sound Information – Musical Gesture and Embedding Synthesis.html A gesture in our application is composed of hand signs (both hands). psychology. Wanderley and M. pressure. Battier.b C. "Hand Tension as a Gesture Segmentation Cue. © 2000.Musical Gesture B. musicology) and a simple wave form (physics).a F. 1997. Harling and A.A.b P. However.1. A. If a human is signing a gesture. pp. now in the musical domain. "Into the fundamentals of Musical Gesture. 1998. A posture in this paper is considered to be a static hand shape where only the positions of the fingers are important. Could they be taken as such into the musical domain? If this is to be done. Posture.uni-magdeburg.
2. The tendency however.M. G. Obviously. Design of Virtual Three-dimensional Instruments for Sound Control. J'appelle geste un type particulier de moment musical.a F.3. banging. Oct. etc. "Pour la beauté du geste. Goldstein.Gesture and musical composition B. PhD Thesis. Battier. hands and arms. Nicolas. [Translated by the authors] Reprint from : Trends in Gestural Control of Music. 12. 1998.Gestural Coherence B. E. However." Proceedings of IEEE SMC98 Conference. musical expression is intimately connected with human movement. moment en général clairement identifiable dans mes œuvres car il comporte une forme et une découpe qui s'imposent tant à la lecture de la partition qu'à son écoute. Wanderley and M. eds. "Gestural Coherence and Musical Interaction Design.a A. 1998.Design of Virtual Instruments B. Empty-handed gestures and free-hand gestures are generally used to indicate use of the hands for communication purposes without physical manipulation of an object. 4. © 2000. Music is a performing art. and part of the quality of the musical experience comes from the relationship between the player's physical technique and the sound that is produced.a M. June. 1998. The word gesture has been used in place of posture and vice versa. In the following. 3. blowing. The notion of a musical gesture that at the time it occurs involves no actual human movement but merely refers to it is quite common.4.2.18 18." Conference presented at Université européenne de la recherche (Paris). hence the existence of such an idiom. 1995. hand posture and gesture describe situations where hands are used as a means to communicate to either machine or human. Ircam Centre Pompidou 90 . is to see gesture as dynamic and posture as static. hand gesture and hand movement are both defined as the motions of fingers. Hand posture is defined as the position of the hand and fingers at one instant in time. I call gesture a particular kind of musical moment.) that are closely tied to familiar sounds. Our rich tradition of musical instruments has created a repertoire of gestures (bowing. which is generally clearly identifiable in my works because it contains a form and a cut-out that are obvious both on reading the score and on listening. M. Simon Fraser University. A listener can appreciate this connection visually (and viscerally) whether in a live concert or in the mind's eye while listening to a recorded performance. Mulder.
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